Manners: Fault Vs. Resposibility

This first came up in an article I read about Millennials having to take on responsibilities for things like global warming – and it’s not our fault.  The economy being in turmoil – and it’s not our fault. But if the last Millennials were born ~1997, they are now 21 years old.  They are voting, and drinking – a majority (the 1981-1992 set) can rent cars. They can run for every office in the land (ok, so only like 2-3 years worth could run for President this year, but we have another 2 years and then…. well someone born in 1985 would be eligible for President, that is well within the range of Millennial age). We are now a generation of adults. We are responsible. We might not have caused the collapse of infrastructure. We may not have de-funded our education system.  We didn’t cause the crash of the housing market in 2007/2008…. but we are going to have to be responsible

read more Manners: Fault Vs. Resposibility

Manners: Decisions

We have all had this conversation at some point in our lives: Person A: I’m hungry. Lets eat. Person B: Oh yeah. Where do you want to go? Person A: I’m so hungry, I don’t care. Person B: Ok. How about [This place] Person A: Oh no, not [This place] I don’t feel like [their food] Person B: Alright, where do you want to go? Person A: I don’t really care. How many of you knew by the third line where this conversation was going?  How many felt their butt clench with internal rage because we have been Person B too often in our lives? So skipping over some of the fun conversations about healthy communication, boundaries and emotional labor here… let’s get right to the meat. Person A doesn’t want to have to make a decision but they want a vote in the decision that’s made. This is terrible manners. For the folks in the back: This is TERRIBLE manners. The

read more Manners: Decisions

Manners: When Winners Lose

One of the reasons I do not particularly like competitive sports is “winners.” A turn of a foot, a play that is only successful one in eight times can win or lose a game. Yes, there is skill. And there is “will” to be the best. These help – but usually (not always, but all-to-often) when you come to things like “championships” they are (or should be!) close on skill and will. The best games are the ones where everyone is guessing who will win. They are fun to watch. They are tense to play. The players who walk away from those games are disappointed. Man do I get that… that is an awful feeling. And the winners are elated. Who wouldn’t be? Especially for those massive games where it was close and no one knows who will walk out victorious. You see, there are the winners who rub it in. They wear their badges of honor and wins and tell everyone how amazing they are. Their

read more Manners: When Winners Lose

Manners: Kindergarten

You know that phrase “everything you need to know about life can be learned….” I’m a big fan of the answer “kindergarten” Are you lonely and in need of a smile? Try sitting in a field of flowers and imagine the singing flowers from Alice in Wonderland (old Disney, not new Disney). Or coloring. Or asking for a hug. If you see someone crying, go and sit beside them, hold their hand. You don’t have to say anything – just be there. Are you nervous at a conference? Find your buddy!  Best plan – have a buddy before you show up and make sure you find your buddy! Your buddy will help you be safe. Did you learn in Kindergarten NOT to cut in line? Next time you’re driving and you see a line of cars… Are you in a public restroom?  Guess what – just like you were taught at school, you need to check and MAKE SURE you

read more Manners: Kindergarten

Manners: NotAllMen

I can’t believe this is still a thing. I can’t believe there are still so damn many men who can’t get why #NotAllMen IS a problem. Here’s the thing, women know not every man is dangerous. Women know that not every man is a rapist (intentionally or not is different post). Women know that there are some men who are our supporters, friends, advocates, and sometimes – yes we sometimes want this – our defenders.  I know I’ve explained what I call the Goethe spectrum when we meet strangers; but I think it’s really even easier to understand. So a man sees a woman walking down the street and smiles at her and says hello. The woman must make an instantaneous decision whether she is safe or not (Seriously, go read the Goethe link if you haven’t yet).  She might get it wrong. She might just be feeling anxious and this poor guy pings higher on the scale than he should.

read more Manners: NotAllMen

Manners: Is “if” a bad word?

This occurred to me only recently, but it is too true: If you have to use “if” to qualify something, it’s probably bad. IF gets used to cover up an insult or negative feedback instead of just having the spine to stand up to your own comment. Look at these examples: If this had more salt, it would be delicious! (wait, so it’s not good?) If you got contacts, we could see your pretty face. (wait, so glasses somehow “hide” facial features?) If that shirt was just cut a little differently… (so it looks bad. I get it) If we go to that restaurant, we might miss the movie (so the movie is your priority.) If you want the blue one, get the blue one (why won’t you just tell me which one you recommend? I asked you!) Even when it is referencing something good “If we buy this house, we can start our family” or “If we go on vacation,

read more Manners: Is “if” a bad word?

Review: Rating System(s)

Netflix relatively recently changed from a 5-star rating skill to “thumbs up” and “thumbs down.”  I hate it. And yes, I do mean “active dislike and will try to get this changed somehow” level of negative emotion. I can’t stand polar rating systems. I know, this is a level of nerd – hating something so inane as a rating system, but let me break it down a little bit. This is how I rate using 5-stars: I hated this (probably didn’t even finish it). Never show me anything like this again. I dragged myself through it, but I will never willingly watch it again. It was Ok. It probably kept me entertained enough in my current mood – I might watch something like this again, but THIS was probably a one-time-watch. I enjoyed this. I think other friends of mine with similar taste would also like this. OMG. Everyone should watch this movie. And watch it again. I don’t know if

read more Review: Rating System(s)

Manners: Blessings

Today is Easter. A notable Christian holiday.  The important Christian holiday. I will hear a lot of “Hallelujah” and “blessings” today – both digitally on Facebook and from live people. I don’t talk a lot about my faith. It is highly personal to me. I also have studied history – and I love church history. But it also breaks my heart. The Church (when I capitalize like this, I mean the “organized, hierarchical groups” – NOT the church which is the “body of Christ”) has done a lot of harm over the centuries. That harm is still being committed today.  People don’t like to think they are doing wrong, but that is exactly what we are supposed to do. I am fortunate that I am able to attend a Seder every year. The Haggadah is the story of the Exodus and a reminder to the Hebrew heritage (and Jewish faith) that they suffered in Egypt. This reminder is also a call (at

read more Manners: Blessings

Manners: A specific bumper sticker

After posting about bumper stickers here, I had a few conversations about bumper stickers – and realized something I hadn’t thought about before. I hate the “Baby on Board” stickers/posters/things on cars. Not because they are unreasonable, but because they are considered “necessary” for new parents to protect their child. Let that sink in for a moment. Most people put those on their car to communicate to the world. Not bragging like the “my child is an honor student” – but to protect their child. There is a necessity to communicate that there is human life in a car. Because drivers around them might not realize that the car in front of them on the road contains human lives. And even worse, they are making the emotional appeal to that terrible driver, because well we can’t expect drivers to respect adult lives – but maybe they will not try to kill a child. Not to say children’s lives are more important, merely that

read more Manners: A specific bumper sticker

Manners: Personal v. Positional Authority

This is actually based on a conversation I had with a colleague, but it is something that flits through my life very regularly.  Some of this is because I have never been the person to naturally accrue either one.  There are people who do (I have known some of them for years and watched, it’s like a damn magnet of influence flows at them). I build it brick by brick, deliberate actions and choices to create the loyalty which seems to easy for others. Ok, to sound less creepy about it, think of that person who you know that you don’t know why people like them. I mean that person who everyone likes and admires despite being coarse or aggressive or blunt – or a combination of all three. They just have charisma (so jealous). They build up authority based purely on their personality. People follow them without knowing why or caring. Then you have people who rise to positions of power

read more Manners: Personal v. Positional Authority